steal

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beg, borrow, or steal

To acquire or accomplish something by any means necessary or available. I don't care if you have to beg, borrow, or steal to get it, I want that car and I want it now! I'm in such a jam, I can't even beg, borrow, or steal the money I need to pay my rent this month.
See also: steal

steal a march over (someone or something)

To gain an unexpected or surreptitious advantage over someone or something, as by accomplishing something before, or better than, someone else. The retail business managed to steal a march over its competitors by signing an exclusive export agreement with Europe. John and I were both trying to win Courtney's heart, but he stole a march over me when he managed to get tickets to see Courtney's favorite band.
See also: march, steal

steal a march upon (someone or something)

To gain an unexpected or surreptitious advantage over someone or something, as by accomplishing something before, or better than, someone else. The retail business managed to steal a march upon its competitors by signing an exclusive export agreement with Europe. John and I were both trying to win Courtney's heart, but he stole a march upon me when he managed to get tickets to see Courtney's favorite band.
See also: march, steal, upon

steal the march over (someone or something)

To gain an unexpected or surreptitious advantage over someone or something, as by accomplishing something before, or better than, someone else. The retail business managed to steal the march over its competitors by signing an exclusive export agreement with Europe. John and I were both trying to win Courtney's heart, but he stole the march over me when he managed to get tickets to see Courtney's favorite band.
See also: march, steal

steal the march upon (someone or something)

To gain an unexpected or surreptitious advantage over someone or something, as by accomplishing something before, or better than, someone else. The retail business managed to steal the march upon its competitors by signing an exclusive export agreement with Europe. John and I were both trying to win Courtney's heart, but he stole the march upon me when he managed to get tickets to see Courtney's favorite band.
See also: march, steal, upon

steal the march on (someone or something)

To gain an unexpected or surreptitious advantage over someone or something, as by accomplishing something before, or better than, someone else. The retail business managed to steal the march on its competitors by signing an exclusive export agreement with Europe. John and I were both trying to win Courtney's heart, but he stole the march on me when he managed to get tickets to see Courtney's favorite band.
See also: march, on, steal

like stealing acorns from a blind pig

Rur. very easy. Getting Mary to sign the house over to me was like stealing acorns from a blind pig. Tom: Was it hard to fool so many people? Charlie: Nope. It was like stealing acorns from a blind pig.
See also: acorn, blind, like, pig, steal

steal a base

Fig. to sneak from one base to another in baseball. The runner stole second base, but he nearly got put out on the way. Tom runs so slowly that he never tries to steal a base.
See also: base, steal

steal a glance at someone or something

Fig. to sneak a peek at someone or something. He stole a glance at his brother, who appeared to be as frightened as he was. Karen stole a glance at her watch and yawned.
See also: glance, steal

steal a march on someone or something

to precede someone who has the same goal; to accomplish something before someone else does. Jeff stole a march on all of us when he had his story published. Our competitor stole a march on us and got the big contract.
See also: march, on, steal

steal away (from someone or something)

to sneak away from someone or something. The thief stole away from the policeman. We stole away from the boring lecture.
See also: away, steal

steal from someone or something

to rob someone or something. You wouldn't steal from a poor man, would you? Max didn't feel bad about stealing from a bank.
See also: steal

steal out of some place

to sneak quietly out of some place. The critic stole out of the theater, unable to endure any more of the abysmal play. I stole out of the lecture and went back to my room.
See also: of, out, place, steal

steal over someone or something

 
1. [for a covering of some sort] to move slowly over someone or something. (As with the sun or the shade of a cloud.) The shade stole over the sunbathers and ended their day. Darkness stole over the land.
2. [for a feeling] to spread through someone gradually. A feeling of gloom stole over the crowd. A sense of high excitement stole over the boys as they waited.
See also: steal

steal someone's heart

Fig. to capture someone's affections; to cause someone to fall in love with oneself. When I first met him, I knew he would steal my heart away. And he did.
See also: heart, steal

steal someone's thunder

Fig. to lessen someone's force or authority. What do you mean by coming in here and stealing my thunder? I'm in charge here! someone stole my thunder by leaking my announcement to the press.
See also: steal, thunder

steal something from someone or something

to take the property belonging to someone or something without permission; to commit the theft of something from someone or something. Max stole $50 from Henry. Lefty stole an apple from the fruit stand.
See also: steal

steal something off someone

to rob something from someone. I think that guy who walked past me stole my wallet off me! Max stole a lot of money off tourists last season.
See also: off, steal

steal the spotlight

 and steal the show Fig.
to give the best performance in a show, play, or some other event; to get attention for oneself. The lead in the play was very good, but the butler stole the show. Ann always tries to steal the spotlight when she and I make a presentation.
See also: spotlight, steal

steal up on someone or something

to sneak up on someone or something. We will steal up on Tony and give him a scare. The fox stole up on the hen and grabbed it.
See also: on, steal, up

steal somebody's heart

to cause someone to love you He married the beautiful singer who stole his heart while singing the blues.
See also: heart, steal

steal the show

to get all the attention and praise at an event or performance She has a small part, but she steals the show from the lead actors.
See also: show, steal

steal a march on somebody/something

to spoil someone's plans and get an advantage over them by doing something sooner or better than them The company plans to steal a march on its competitors by offering the same computer at a lower price.
See also: march, on, steal

steal somebody's thunder

to do something that takes attention away from what someone else has done
Usage notes: In the 17th century the writer John Dennis built a machine which made sounds like thunder for one of his plays, but the idea was copied by someone else and used in another play.
I kept quiet about my pregnancy because Cathy was getting married, and I didn't want to steal her thunder.
See also: steal, thunder

steal the show

to get all the attention and praise at an event or performance All the singers were good, but 16-year-old Karine stole the show.
See also: show, steal

beg, borrow, or steal

Obtain by any possible means, as in You couldn't beg, borrow, or steal tickets to the Olympics. This term is often used in the negative, to describe something that cannot be obtained; Chaucer used it in The Tale of the Man of Law. [Late 1300s]
See also: steal

steal a march on

Gain an advantage over unexpectedly or secretly, as in Macy's stole a march on their rival department store with their Thanksgiving Day parade. This metaphoric expression comes from medieval warfare, where a march was the distance an army could travel in a day. By quietly marching at night, a force could surprise and overtake the enemy at daybreak. Its figurative use dates from the second half of the 1700s.
See also: march, on, steal

steal someone blind

Also, rob someone blind. Rob or cheat someone mercilessly, as in Ann always maintained that children would steal their parents blind. The allusion here is unclear. Possibly it means stealing everything, including someone's sight. [Mid-1900s]
See also: blind, steal

steal someone's heart

Win someone's love, as in That puppy stole Brian's heart. [Late 1500s]
See also: heart, steal

steal someone's thunder

Use or appropriate another's idea, especially to one's advantage, as in It was Harold's idea but they stole his thunder and turned it into a massive advertising campaign without giving him credit . This idiom comes from an actual incident in which playwright and critic John Dennis (1657-1734) devised a "thunder machine" (by rattling a sheet of tin backstage) for his play, Appius and Virginia (1709), and a few days later discovered the same device being used in a performance of Macbeth, whereupon he declared, "They steal my thunder."
See also: steal, thunder

steal the show

Also, steal the spotlight. Be the center of attention, as in The speeches were interesting but Eliza's singing stole the show. This idiom alludes to unexpectedly outshining the rest of the cast in a theatrical production. [First half of 1900s]
See also: show, steal

steal away

v.
To leave quietly without being noticed: During the party, the lovers stole away to the garden.
See also: away, steal

a steal

n. a bargain. This car wasn’t exactly a steal at this price, but it’s still a good value.
See also: steal

steal (someone's) heart

To win one's affection or love.
See also: heart, steal

steal (someone's) thunder

To use, appropriate, or preempt the use of another's idea, especially to one's own advantage and without consent by the originator.
See also: steal, thunder

mean enough to steal a penny off a dead man's eyes

Very mean. To keep a deceased's eyes closed, undertakers or whoever tended the body placed coins on the eyes. Anyone who would steal the money was indeed reprehensible. Just as evil was a man who was “mean enough to steal his wife's egg money,” pin money earned from selling eggs that the family didn't use themselves.
See also: dead, enough, eye, mean, off, penny, steal
References in classic literature ?
Then the first dark night that comes steal the key out of the old man's britches after he goes to bed, and shove off down the river on the raft with Jim, hiding daytimes and running nights, the way me and Jim used to do be- fore.
Well, one thing was dead sure, and that was that Tom Sawyer was in earnest, and was actuly going to help steal that nigger out of slavery.
Gradually their talk died out and drowsiness began to steal upon the eyelids of the little waifs.
They eat up the chicken food, and steal the oats and bran, and make holes in the meal bags.
His mind--such as it was--was fixed on her trying to steal, and he credited her at once with making use of this new opportunity.
Then how,' said the old man, looking fearfully round, 'how can you bear to think that we are safe, when they are searching for me everywhere, and may come here, and steal upon us, even while we're talking?
Dec 19 - Burglar smashes glass in garage window and steals hand tools and motorcycle helmet.
New Domain Makes it Easier Than Ever to Identify Where to Find Steals (Not Just Deals) on the Web for Babies, Kids, and Women
It isn't likely that thieves who steals aluminum siding will shop regionally for the best price.
Beaver Steals Fire: A Salish Coyote Story is a picturebook rendition of a story directly from the cultural tradition of the Salish people of Montana.
Scott Podsednik, who finished second in the league with 59 steals behind Chone Figgins, was thrown out on a pitchout called from the bench by Scioscia in the fifth inning.
The businessperson signs in as a dayuse guest, and, during that time, someone steals a credit card from the person's wallet.
We will use every means at our disposal to catch anyone who steals anything from this building or the people who live here.
June 7 - Burglar smashes rear window with glass hammer, enters and steals handbag, car keys, and VW Golf.
Fears, who will play at UC Santa Barbara, averaged 16 points, four rebounds, three steals and 3.